For many of us in the business and technology fields, emails can be our lifeline.  Unfortunately, hackers also realize this and they are doing everything they can to subvert our emails and use them against us to infiltrate our networks.  That’s why we rely on our email host to help protect us from phishing emails and other examples of malicious messages.  However, a recent study has revealed that those email hosts may not be as successful as we thought about handling this task.

What is it that email hosts are missing?

Mimecast Limited revealed at the recent RSA Conference in San Francisco that they had conducted a series of tests into the efficacy of email hosts when it comes to filtering out and stopping these dangerous messages.  (Mimecast is a renowned technology firm that is known for email and data security.)  Their tests showed that out of about 95 million emails, almost 12,000 emails with malware slipped through these safety nets.  What is so disappointing about this is that the malware should be easily detected by email hosts.  But malware wasn’t the only problem that made its way through.  The survey also found that the email hosts missed in just one quarter:

  • 14,277,163 pieces of spam;
  • 23,072 instances of impersonation attacks;
  • 11,653 emails containing known malware;
  • 9,992 emails containing dangerous file types; and
  • 849 unknown emails with malware attachments.

But what is more troubling is not just that these got through the system, but it is on the rise with an increase of over 500% since the previous quarter.  A similar survey conducted by Vanson Bourne revealed there has been a 94% increase in “untargeted phishing attacks” and a 92% increase in “targeted spear-phishing attacks.”

One of the reasons behind these failures of the email hosts is because of the preponderance of “legacy” email hosts.  These are outdated systems that are not up to the task of monitoring current viruses and malware.  This underscores the need to constantly update systems to stay at least one step ahead of the hackers.  It is a war of escalation—as the hackers improve their hacks, the businesses improve their security, which causes the hackers to improve their hacks, and so on.  But it is an important note that these legacy systems should be replaced or upgraded as soon as possible before they allow something through that could potentially cripple a business. Find out how New Edge Technology Solutions can help you plan and implement email security to fit your company needs.  Contact NETS for a free consultation.

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